Once again I find myself wondering just why the hell it is that phones don’t come complete with an "exterminate" button. It would make my life so much easier, and also: more fun!
A "company" (I use that word in its loosest term, because they don’t have a website and if I look them up on Companies House, I just bet they won’t be there) calling themselves Total Asset Management (Henceforth: Total Assholes Management) are harassing me. And Terry, in fact. Every day they call me, asking if I’d like to receive their information pack on Asshole Management, which is a field in which they claim some considerable expertise. I am not even a little bit surprised.
Every day I tell them that no, I do not want to receive their information pack, and that, actually, we’re with the Telephone Preference Service, which means that they’re not allowed to be calling us. Every day, they apologize, promise never to call again, hang up and… less than one minute later, they call back and ask to speak to Terry.
Every day, as soon as this little pantomime is over, Terry and I shake our heads like the wise old owls we’re not, tell ourselves that really, we should report these people to the Telephone Preference Service, or… someone… and then do absolutely nothing about it, partly because we are lazy, but partly because the calls are obviously coming from abroad (the callers are always speaking heavily-accented pidgin English, and have difficulty pronouncing their own, very English-sounding, names and the number always comes up as "unavailable") so there’s probably not much the TPS could do about it, anyway.
Today, though, they have gone too far, for today Total Assholes Management have called me no less than SEVEN TIMES. Seven. Times. The first call came this morning, and was from a woman with an Indian accent who introduced herself as "Clara MacDonald" (a common name in that part of the world, I believe. Weird how she couldn’t quite pronounce it, though!). Before she had even got started on her spiel, I interrupted and explained to her that her company has been calling me every day, and that I’d like it to stop now, please, so could she remove me from her dialer. She apologised, said she’d never call again, and then, the requisite sixty seconds, she was back on the phone.
"Hello!" she said brightly, if indistinctly. "It is … Clara… Macd…Mac…Donald…from Total Assholes Management! I would like to speak to Mr Terry Mia… oh! Oooooh! Ooooh noooo!"
Then she hung up.
Now, if there’s one thing I hate more than people interrupting my (important!) work to try and sell me something, it’s someone who interrupts my work just so they can hang up on me. My blood boiled, but I had to content myself with ranting about it to Terry, who had been in the shower at the time, and had missed the (complete lack of) fun. Luckily for me, though (because I like a bit of drama), they called back this afternoon.
This time my caller was "Mike Smith", also of Total Assholes Management. I explained to Mike that his company had already called twice today, and asked to speak to his manager. So he hung up on me. Then he called back and asked to speak to Terry, who was at the gym. (Notice how I am NOT at the gym). Then he hung up on me when he realised that – whoops! – it was me again!
Ten minutes later, the phone rang again. This time it was "Nick Seargeant" of… can you guess? Yes! He was calling from Total Assholes Management! And he hung up on me before I could say anything more than "Can I take your phone numb…." Then he called back for Terry. And hung up! Again!
As I sit here writing this, the phone has just rung again. This time, there was no one there, but the number was "unavailable" and I’m willing to bet all I have (no one take me up on this) that it was my old pals from Total Assholes Management. I’d quite like to kill them now, to be honest. Ideally, by calling them on the phone repeatedly, until they go out of their tiny minds.
I’m thinking I need to be a bit cleverer about this now, though. By the time "Nick" called, I had already deciced that I was going to string the next Asshole Manager along a bit, keep them talking, make them think I’m interested in their scam, and somehow manage to get some details out of them that would allow me to report them to …. someone. Because I am a totally awesome detective-type person like that. But, of course, now they just keep hanging up before I can get a word out. Maybe it would be more fun to buy a whistle (OH GOD, NO!) and blow it down the phone next time they call. That wouldn’t work out so good if it turned out to be a client calling, though, hmmmm?
So, I hand my dilemma over to you, good readers. How should Total Asshole Management be handled?Over to you…
Oh, and just to add: no, not answering the phone isn’t an option – they’re calling on the business line, not the home line, which can legitimately be ignored.